White House Suspends Travel from India with Effect from May 4; Check Whether You’re Exempted from Entry Ban

In view of the devastating second wave of the pandemic in India, President Joe Biden is to restrict travel from India starting on May 4, 2021, according to Jen Saki, the Press Secretary of White House. The temporary ban on travel from India to USA will apply only to non-US residents who are from or have been in India within 14 days prior to May 4, 12:01 am ET.

US India travel ban, US india travel news, US restricts travel from India

Picture credit: The Times of India

However, the India-USA travel restriction will not apply to US citizens, lawful permanent residents/green cardholders, their immediate family, and certain noncitizens including humanitarian workers from India. The United States’ entry requirements apply to those exempted from the ban on travel from India. They must test negative within 72 hours prior to boarding US-bound flights in India, take a test upon arrival, and undergo quarantine if they are vaccinated.

The United States’ ban on entry of travelers from India does not apply to certain categories of students, academics and journalists, according to the Secretary of State’s media briefing that came hours after the White House issued the proclamation suspending travel from India for non-US residents. Students who are scheduled to commence studies in the fall may seem exemption from the US’ entry restrictions.

The US does not need students looking to begin or continue an academic or vocational program starting August 1 or later, to contact the embassy/consulate and seek exemption from the restriction. They may travel to the US not more than 30 days before the commencement of their academic/non-academic studies. They must have a valid F-1 or M-1 visa. Students who need to apply for a new F-1 or M-1 visa should look out for updates on the resumption of visa services at the nearest US embassy or consulate in India.

Individuals from India, who are granted NIEs to by the US Department of State, can enter the US if they travel for purposes related to national security, public health care, and humanitarianism. They should visit the website of the nearest US embassy or consulate and contact them prior to traveling to the US as long as the travel from India is restricted.

Who are exempted from suspension of travel from India to USA:

US citizens, lawful permanent residents, academics, journalists, students with valid F-1 or M-1 visas
Noncitizen nationals of the US;
Noncitizens, including spouses and children of US citizens or lawful permanent residents;
Any noncitizen who is the parent or legal guardian of a US citizen or lawful permanent resident, provided that the US citizen or lawful permanent resident is unmarried and under the age of 21;
Any noncitizen who is the sibling of a US citizen or lawful permanent resident, provided that both are unmarried and under the age of 21;
Any noncitizen invited by the US government for purposes related to containment of the pandemic;
Any noncitizen who is a member of the US Armed Forces or who is a spouse or child of a member of the US Armed Forces;
Any noncitizen whose entry is in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security;

“US citizens and lawful permanent residents from India can travel on Air India, United Airlines, Qatar Airways, Delta-Air France, and Lufthansa-United flights to the United States. Since the US travel ban news broke out, we have been receiving an influx of calls. We are trying our best to accommodate our customers on the best flights from India to USA for the most reasonable fares available,” said the chief travel advisor of IndianEagle.com, a most-trusted travel-booking organization headquartered in the US.

I am an Indian citizen on B1/B2. Can I travel to USA after May 4?

Normally, non-US residents including B1/B2 visa holders from India are banned from entry into the US, starting on May 4. If you are a parent of an unmarried US citizen/lawful permanent resident under 21 years of age, you are exempted from the restriction.

I am on H4 and my kid is a US citizen. Are we exempted from the ban on travel from India to USA?

Yes, you are. Being a parent of a US citizen, unmarried and under 21 years, you can travel to the US despite the restriction.

I hold a valid H1B visa. I am currently in India. Does the restriction apply to me?

The United States’ restriction on entry of travelers from India applies to you if you are not employed in the healthcare sector, or if you don’t have a US-born kid. Please be advised to contact and check with the US embassy or consulate, or your employer, if you are an H1B visa professional in the US healthcare sector.

Can I travel to India from USA after the restriction takes effect on May 4?

You can travel to India from USA. The restriction that will take effect on May 4 applies to travel from India

94 thoughts on “White House Suspends Travel from India with Effect from May 4; Check Whether You’re Exempted from Entry Ban

  1. Keith H Thompson

    My mother is try to enter the US with a humanitarian visa. Will she be able to fly on Thursday?

    Reply
  2. Sunaina

    I am F1 visa holder , New student for University. My classes starts from June 7th (It’s summer intake). I booked my flight on May 21st . Can I travel?? Is there exemptions for May intake students also ??

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Sunaina! Students may qualify for exemption. The latest proclamation says, “Students with valid F-1 and M-1 visas intending to begin or continue an academic programme commencing August 1 or later do not need to contact an embassy or consulate to seek an individual exemption to travel. They may enter the United States no earlier than 30 days before the start of their academic studies.”

      Reply
  3. Sunny Sethi

    I am on H1b and my wife on H4 and my son is US citizen. We are all in India .
    Are we exempted from this travel ban?

    Reply
  4. Shun

    Hello,

    I have booked tickets for my inlawas from Chennai to US on May 22 (Air India). They are in visitor visa. Considering the recent travel restrictions, they will not be able ro travel to US.

    Do you know if we will provided with a full refund for the air tickets if we cannot travel due to restrictions?

    Reply
  5. Gagandeep kaur

    I am on J1 visa have tickets booked for 29 may and my return flight is on 19 July what I should do?? I want to see my family and doctor

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Gagandeep! Please be advised to check with the US embassy or Indian embassy whether you are exempted from the travel restriction.

      Reply
  6. Krishna

    Hi, my cousin is on H1B went to India on family emergency, however his wife and US born kid in US. Can he travel alone as a father of US Born kid. Or does he need to accompany with kid? Thanks.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Krishna! He can travel. He must carry a copy of his US-born kid’s passport.

      Reply
      • Kishore

        What if the Kid and wife is in India ? Can he travel back if he has valid visa by showing the birth certificate and passport copy ? Would they check the kids stamping ?

        Reply
        • indianeagle Post author

          Hi Kishore! Yes, he can travel back alone and must carry kid’s birth certificate and passport copy. However, he may be asked if the kid is in India or the US.

          Reply
  7. Arindam

    I have a stamped H1B and my wife is a US citizen, although at the moment she lives with me in India. I was due to travel on 10th May. Am I exempt given that I am an H1B holder who is a spouse of a US citizen, or does the exemption only apply to spouses of US citizens on spouse visa?

    Reply
  8. K

    The restriction is for people who stayed 14days in India prior to flying to USA. What if a person stays less than 14days (Assuming 3-4 days of stay in India) will the travel ban apply in this case?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hello! If you have been in India any time in 14 days, you are barred from entry into USA after May 4 unless you belong to any of the exempt categories.

      Reply
  9. Vijay Kola

    I am H1B Visa Holder and my spouse and kid are H4 Visa holders. We booked Lufthansa Flight scheduled at 02:50 AM 04-May through Frankfurt. Are we allowed to transit through Frankfurt.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Vijay! Indian passport holders are not permitted to fly to US via EU due to restrictions imposed by the US.

      Reply
  10. Anantha

    Hello. I’m a J2 visa holder and currently in India. My spouse is in US currently on J1 visa as a research scholar.
    Can i travel to US from India towards end of May?

    Reply
  11. Shiva

    I’m in the US on H1B. Tickets are booked for my wife on May 14th. Would she be allowed to travel?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Shiva! If your wife is a US citizen or lawful permanent resident, she will be allowed to enter US. If she is an Indian passport holder, she may not be allowed as only spouses of US citizens or green card holders are exempted from restrictions.

      Reply
  12. Srinivas R

    Hi, According to https://in.usembassy.gov/visas/national-interest-exception-frequently-asked-questions/ it points to the following travel.state.gov that points B1/B2 as exception. Can anyone please clarify if this is correct as parents generally travel on B1/B2 visa.

    For more information about categories of individuals who are not subject to the Proclamation, as well as those who may qualify for an exception to the current travel restrictions, see https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news/presidential-proclamation-on-the-suspension-of-entry-as-nonimmigrants-of-certain-additional-persons-who-pose-a-risk-of-transmitting-coronavirus-disease-2019.html

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Srinivas! In the article, B-1/B-2 visa holders mentioned is regarding pilots and aircrew.

      Reply
  13. Manvith Kumbla

    My wife is on H4 and I have an H1B visa with approved i-140. Can she travel on 7th May from Mumbai to Newark ? Unite Airlines customer care confirmed that she can travel since I’m currently in US.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Manvith! We are not sure about this. If the airline assures your wife’s entry into the US amid restrictions, she can travel.

      Reply
  14. Vishal Reddy

    Hello, I am a F-1 student and my summer semester starts on 1st June,2021. This is will be my first semester in USA, will I be able to travel on 16th May,2021?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Vishal! As per the proclamation, students with F-1 or M-1 visas looking to begin their semester in the fall of 2021 are exempted. Please be advised to check with the US embassy or Indian Embassy whether you are exempted.

      Reply
  15. Kay bee

    I am US Citizen. Trying to get back to US. Flying back on British Airways. On may 6th. Why is British Airways not listed on your available airlines list?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Kay! Travelers from India are not permitted to enter UK due to travel ban by the UK government which has been in place since April 23. Please be advised to check with the airline whether you can travel to US on British Airways from India.

      Reply
  16. Vishal

    Hi, I am on H4 visa and my husband is on H1B visa. My kids are US Citizens. We all are currently in india. Can my parents come with us? My parents have visitors visa. Are they exempted ?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Vishal! No, your parents are not exempted from the travel restrictions placed by the US.

      Reply
  17. Anusha Reddy

    Hello Indian Eagle, Thank you for helping lot of folks in the time of need.

    I am travelling from Hyderabad to Houston on Qatar airways. I am A USC.

    I am taking the RT-PCR test and filling out the CDC paper work.

    Do I need anything else, I am ok to travel through Doha right ?

    Thanks Again !

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Anusha! Yes, you can travel to USA from India via Doha. Additionally Qatar Requires travelers from India to present negative PCR report issued within 48 hours prior to departure.

      Reply
  18. Swathi

    Hi, My mom who is on Visitor Visa in US has a return ticket to India on May 23rd. Can she travel from USA to India?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Swathi! Yes, your mother can travel from US to India. The travel restriction is only for travelers from India to US.

      Reply
      • vishal

        Is there any quarantine requirements in India for someone flying from USA ? And does it changes if someone shows negative RTPCR test or fully vaccinated card ?

        Reply
        • indianeagle Post author

          Hi Vishal! If you are flying from USA to India on a direct flight, you won’t be subject to quarantine upon presenting a negative RT-PCR report not older than 72 hours before departure and remaining asymptomatic. You also have to fill out a self-declaration form on Air Suvidha portal and upload your pre-arrival negative COVID report onto the same portal. You will be advised to self-monitor your health for 14 days.

          Reply
  19. Deepak

    Hi, I am on H1B and flew to India on April 25th for family emergency. My return flight on May 31st, with United Airlines ( from Delhi to SFO). I am planning to re-route my United flight. Is there any other 3rd country I can travel through to enter US ?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Deepak! If you don’t belong to any of the exempted categories, then you won’t be allowed to travel to US if you were in India or any other restricted country within the last 14 days of your arrival into US. So even if you go through another country, you won’t be permitted entry if you were in India anytime in the last 14 days before your arrival in US.

      Reply
  20. Stan

    Hi,

    Thanks so much for assisting us. I am on H1B visa and looking to travel back to US. My kids who are US citizens are in the US currently. Do you know what documentation is needed for me to prove that I am a parent of US citizens?

    Reply
  21. Sai

    Hi
    I am planning to depart from United states on May 22nd to India and return on July 10th to USA to visit my family, for which I’ve already booked my tickets. I’m on H1B status and Single, Should I be concerned with the travel ban as my return ticket is in July (10th of July)? Do I need to consider rescheduling or cancelling my trip ? Any suggestions are appreciated.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Sai! There is not exact update as to when the travel restrictions will be lifted. Hope that the situation in India gets under control.

      Reply
  22. Gyan

    G
    Hello this is mr gyan I am Canadian citizen at present I am in india can I travel to usa with this travel ban

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Gyan! No, you cannot travel to US from India unless you are a legal permanent resident of US. As per the travel restrictions placed by the US, a traveler won’t be permitted into US if he/she has been in India or any other restricted country anytime within the past 14 days prior to arrival in the US, unless they belong to exempted categories.

      Reply
  23. Vijay Kumar

    Hi , Kindly do suggest.if the principal beneficiary i.e., the H-1B visa holder is currently in the US, then his/her family H4 visa holder and parents B2 Visa. who is outside the country(India) can return to the USA?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Vijay! No, family of H1B visa holder (H4 visa holder and parents with B2 visa) are not permitted to travel due to restrictions placed by the US.

      Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi A.s! Please be advised to check with the US embassy or Indian Embassy.

      Reply
  24. parshv

    I have booked a flight on 15th may from USA to India through Delta airlines where connection in France and return flight will be on 14th July.
    I have an Indian Passport and valid F-1 visa. Can I travel to/from India?

    Reply
  25. Dattathri

    My relative an indian citizen is booked on vbm from ny to Chennai on 10.5.21, is there any travel ban in india for incoming flights into India from US? Please reply urgently.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Dattathri! No, there is no travel ban on flights coming from US into India.

      Reply
  26. Thiyagu

    Hello IndianEagle Team,

    Thanks for helping us during this tough time. I am on H1B. My kids are US citizens who is in India now. Can I travel alone to US or the exemption will be applicable only if I travel with the kids? Thanks again

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Thiyagu! Yes, you can travel alone. You must carry kids’ birth certificate/proof of relationship and passports. However, you may be asked if your kids are in India or the US.

      Reply
  27. Karthikeyan Sundaram

    Hi, I have booked the round way trip 9th June from US to India and return 9th July from India to US. Is there any plan to cancel the flights on this date. Your response is much appreciated. Thanks.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Karthikeyan! There is no exact update as to when the travel restrictions laid down by the US will be lifted. Hope that they don’t last long.

      Reply
  28. Sheba Chrsitopher

    HI,
    I am a teacher on J1 Visa (exchange visitor) with a work permit to work in US . Am I exempt despite these restrictions? Can I travel from India to US?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Sheba! As per the information on US embassy website, Travelers who already possess a valid student or exchange visitor (F, M, or J) visa and who will begin their programs on or after August 1, 2021, may travel to the United States without further action from the Embassy or Consulates in India. Direct travel to the United States from India with a F/M/J visa may begin no more than 30 days prior to the start date of a student’s classes. For more information regarding it, please be advised to go through https://in.usembassy.gov/visas/national-interest-exception-frequently-asked-questions/

      Reply
  29. Anil Kukreja

    I booked LAX to BOM non-refundable ticket through Indian Eagle, travel date is 6/24/2021 with return date on 7/24/2021. Considering the current COVID-19 situation in India, can I cancel my ticket now and recieve a full credit for the forture airline ticket purchases though Indian Eagle or United Airlines? United Airline is allowing free cancellation if tickets are booked through them. If tickets are booked through Indian Eagle, we need to check with Indian Eagle for their charges (if any).

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Anil! Hopefully the situation in India will be under control starting the end of May. Be requested to wait till this month end. Usually, non-refundable tickets are non-cancellable unless the airline itself cancels all reservations. Depending on the ticket rules, non-refundable tickets can be kept open for rebooking travel in the future. Please be advised to contact our support desk at 01-800-615-3969.

      Reply
  30. Mohd Nissar

    Hi
    I want to go cayman island through USA in June 2021. It is possible
    Because after 04 May 2021 USA ban non-USA citizens
    I have B1/B2 visa
    So I can go cayman island it is possible
    Please let me know thanks

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Nissar! Unless you belong to any of the exempted categories, you cannot travel to the US from India with a B1/B2 visa.

      Reply
  31. Parwez

    I have c1/d visa and travelling from india to bermuda via newyork. Can i still travel sfter ban on 4 th may.

    Reply
  32. Trupti

    Hey ,
    I am on my h1-b , I have my visa already . I have received one dose of vaccine in usa and flew to India for emergency. My second dose is pending and would like to fly back. Will I be exempted to receive my second dose ?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Trupti! We are not sure about it. Please be advised to check with the US embassy or Indian Embassy.

      Reply
  33. Vishaal Harnathka

    hello i have booked tickets for my brothers family for travel from india to usa for june 2nd india departure. considering the situation that usa has banned tourist visa entry. so can i cancel for full refund. i have booked through indianeagle.

    Reply
  34. Ram

    I have booked Indian Airlines from NY to DEL via Indian Eagle. Now with the travel ban, I am not qualified for any exceptions and would like to cancel my tickets and get a refund. Would you let me know what’s the process?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Ram! Travel from USA to India is not restricted and not everyone is barred from traveling back to USA from India. Anyway, we will help you with cancellation and refund, if your ticket is eligible for a refund. Please help us with your trip ID or contact our support desk at 01-800-615-3969.

      Reply
  35. Anitha

    I’m we have tickets on June 1st from HYD to Mum-Newark(air india). We are on h4 dependent visa and want to know Can we travel ?
    If no, What is the procedure to reschedule ?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Anitha! Unless you have a US-born kid or if you belong to any of the other exempted category, you won’t be able to travel to US if the travel ban is not lifted by June. If you are a customer of Indian Eagle, please contact our support desk for further help. If not, please be advised to call the airline service.

      Reply
  36. Nabina

    Hi, my flight on may 25 was cancelled by Emirates. I am Nepali citizen currently residing in Nepal US green card holder, spouse of US citizen. Am I eligible to travel via air bubble ( Nepal to India to USA) …?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Nabina! Yes, US green card holders are eligible to fly from India to US on air bubble flights. If travel from Nepal to India is open, then you can travel to India.

      Reply
  37. Rajesh Vipradas

    Hello IndianEagle Team,

    I am on H1B and have to visit India due to some emergency. My kid is US citizen who is in India now. Can I travel alone to US from India or the exemption will be applicable only if I travel with my kid?

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Rajesh! You might be allowed to travel upon presenting your kid’s passport copy and relationship certificate. However, you might be asked whether your son is in India or the US.

      Reply
  38. AMAR

    Hi, I am on H1B Visa with green card filed and currently in USA. My wife traveled to India on March 14th and is scheduled to come back to USA on 16th May on H4 Visa. Since I am in USA, is she allowed to travel here on stamped H4 Visa.

    Reply
    • indianeagle Post author

      Hi Amar! Since you are not a green card holder yet, your spouse on H4 visa may not be allowed to enter amid the restrictions.

      Reply

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